Rhun ap Iorwerth says Plaid Cymru vote will ensure Wales is not ignored at Westminster

  • Plaid Cymru leader Rhun ap Iorwerth says it's time to kick the Conservatives out of power but Labour have been taking Wales for granted

Voting for Plaid Cymru is the only way to guarantee fair funding for Wales, according to party leader Rhun ap Iorwerth, who says a vote for his party will ensure Wales is not ignored at Westminster.

He launched Plaid Cymru's General Election campaign at a rally in Bangor on Thursday, 30 May, telling supporters his is the only party “putting the interests of Wales ahead of party interests".

He also said Plaid Cymru is campaigning for a "fairer, more ambitious Wales".

"It is time to kick the Tories out of power," he told supporters.

"They have left a trail of destruction and we cannot get rid of that government quickly enough.

"The message is also abundantly clear that people don't want Labour to be taken for granted either. For too long, Wales has been overlooked at Westminster... UK parties and MPs from Wales for the UK parties putting ultimately the Labour or Conservative whip in London above their nation's interests.

"Well, Plaid Cymru says no more. Plaid Cymru says no more to austerity, no more to empty promises and no more to narrow-mindedness and we say no more to ignoring Wales in Westminster.

"Plaid Cymru is the only party that offers that real Welsh alternative in this election: a party that will fight for fairness, and ambition and will fight for Wales day in and day out.

"Remember, this isn't just about who holds the keys to 10 Downing Street. This is about asking the people of Wales to consider who will best represent their street, who is best representing the interests of their families?

"And remember Wales' voice is being diluted at this election. A significant drop in the number of MPs from 40 to 32, but we make this pledge - we will not allow Plaid Cymru's voice to be silenced. We will not allow Wales' voice to be silenced and Plaid Cymru's voice in representing Wales' voice and interest will never ever be diminished, neither will be our commitment to the people of this country."

Plaid Cymru is targeting the constituency of Ynys Môn, which has been held by Conservative Virginia Crosby but has been previously held by both Plaid Cymru and Labour. Mr ap Iorwerth represents the constituency in the Senedd in Cardiff Bay.

The leader said his party was in "pole position" to take the seat, as well as arguing they are best placed to win the new constituency of Caerfyrddin (Carmarthen).

Jonathan Edwards announced on Tuesday he would not be seeking re-election as an MP for the area.

Mr Edwards was previously a Plaid Cymru MP for the old constituency of Carmarthen East and Dinefwr. However, he has been an independent since he was suspended from the party after accepting a police caution in May 2020 for assaulting his wife at their home in Ammanford.

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It's not just Plaid Cymru hoping to take the newly-created seat: Labour believes it has a chance there and so does the Conservative chief whip Simon Hart who is also standing.

Mr ap Iorwerth said: “It is clear that people across Wales have called time on this disastrous and destructive Conservative government.

“Voting Plaid in constituencies like Ynys Môn is essential in keeping the Tories away from Westminster and out of Wales. As recent polling and the Police and Crime Commissioner Election in May showed, Plaid Cymru’s Llinos Medi is in pole position to dislodge the sitting Tory MP, giving constituents a fresh local voice at Westminster."

Talking about target seats, he added: “At the same time, voting Plaid in Carmarthen and Bangor Aberconwy keeps Labour in check too. With candidates like Ann Davies in Carmarthen, Plaid Cymru is best placed to effectively represent our communities and offer a positive alternative to Labour and the Tories.

“Plaid’s positive message of a fairer, more ambitious Wales, shows that we are the only party putting the interests of the nation ahead of party interests."

He continued: “In stark contrast, Labour’s campaign has already consigned Wales to the scrapheap of unfair funding and a Westminster parliament which holds Wales back.

“This election is not just about who has the keys to 10 Downing Street. It’s also about who represents your street, your community, and your country’s interests day in day out.”

Plaid Cymru won four MPs in 2019 but is now a group of three, led by Liz Saville-Roberts. She is campaigning to retain her Dwyfor Meirionnydd seat which has expanded boundaries for this election.

Due to boundary changes, the number of Welsh MPs returning to Westminster will reduce after the election from 40 to 32.

Meanwhile, Labour is hoping to win back Welsh seats lost to the Conservatives at the last General Election in 2019.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced an election for Thursday 4 July last Wednesday. Credit: PA Images

The party lost six seats - Wrexham, Bridgend, Delyn, the Vale of Clwyd, Clwyd South and Ynys Mon.

Leader of the Welsh Conservatives and Senedd member Andrew RT Davies said: “Plaid Cymru are a prime example of how a leopard never changes its spots.

“No matter how Plaid try to present themselves, they are a trojan horse for divisive separatism, and far from being an anti-establishment party, they have been propping up Labour in Cardiff Bay to push through 20mph speed limits, plans for 36 more politicians and the hugely destructive sustainable farming scheme.

“The Welsh Conservatives are the only real alternative to Labour, and we are the only party in the Senedd that will scrap 20mph, scrap plans for 36 more politicians and develop a farming subsidy scheme that works for farmers, not against them.”

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